Equinor has partnered with technology giant Microsoft on a new carbon capture and storage (CSS) project for its Northern Lights development, Kallanish Energy reports.
Under a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) announced on Wednesday, Microsoft will act as a technology partner to the project.
Microsoft will explore the use of Northern Lights’ CO2 transport and storage facility as part of Microsoft’s portfolio of carbon capture, transportation, and storage projects. It will also explore ways to invest in the effective development of Northern Lights, according to a statement from Equinor.
“One of the world’s imperatives is the need to develop new ways to capture, transport, and permanently store carbon. This will require enormous investment and innovation, including a huge amount of computing power and data,” said Brad Smith, president of Microsoft.
“Our goal is not only to contribute our technology and know-how, but explore how new solutions like the Northern Lights project can help us meet our own carbon negative goals by 2030,” he added.
The Northern Lights project is part of a wider, full-scale CCS project operated by Equinor. The Langskip project will initially include capture of CO2 from Norwegian industrial capture sources, while the Northern Lights project comprises transportation, receipt and permanent storage of CO2 in a reservoir in the northern North Sea.
Initially, Northern Lights will include capacity to transport, inject and store up to 1.5 million tonnes of CO2 annually. Once the CO2 is captured onshore, it will be transported by ships, injected and permanently stored 2,600 meters below the seabed of the North Sea.
The project is being developed by Equinor in equal partnership with supermajors Shell and Total, in the form of a joint venture that is awaiting regulatory approval. The final investment decision is subject to the Norwegian parliament’s approval, anticipated in late 2020, with operations planned to commence in the first half of 2024.
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